Lack of reliable data on enrolment, attendance, achievement and completion of education by children with disabilities is an issue in most countries where the Department for International Development (DFID) provides support to education. DFID's new Education Strategy sets out our commitment to publish a new toolkit which aims to support country programmes and partners in delivering inclusive education for children with a disability. This will include working with national partners on data collection and monitoring. At an international level, progress will require working with the Global Monitoring Report (GMR) and UNESCO's Institute for Statistics (UIS).
Every child should have access to a good quality basic education. The Department for International Development (DFID) will continue to advocate for the education of children with disabilities in all forums, including the G8, G20 and the United Nations Millennium Development Goals Review Summit. DFID recognises the importance of supporting primary aged children with disabilities to receive an education, as well as other children who have been denied access, for achieving the Millennium Development Goal.
The Department for International Development (DFID) will support the Education for All-Fast Track Initiative (EFA-FTI) to ensure that countries are supported to tackle exclusion of children from education including those with a disability. DFID has been a member of the small task team of donors and civil society which has led on the production and piloting of the FTI's equity and inclusion framework. DFID's Rwanda office is currently using the framework in partnership with the national Government and we would expect to use the framework in other DFID partner countries where education sector plans are being assessed under the FTI.
The Department of International Development (DFID) has been one of the lead partners within the Education for All-Fast Track Initiative (EFA-FTI) in supporting the development of an Equity and Inclusion Tool. This will ensure that countries which are supported address the barriers to education faced by marginalised children including those with a disability. The Indicative Framework is currently under review. In the context of this review, DFID will continue stress the importance of including equity and inclusion issues.
Supporting developing countries to monitor children's access to education is important for achieving the Millennium Development Goals. The Department for International Development (DFID) is already providing financial support to the UNESCO Institute for Statistics (£200,000 in 2009-10) and the UNESCO Global Monitoring Report (£300,000 in 2009-10) to collect and disseminate statistical information of children's enrolment. As part of our continuing dialogue with these and other organisations, we have advocated the need for data collection to include statistics for children with disabilities. DFID supported calls for equity-based reporting of statistics from participants to the DFID Millennium Development Goals Conference on 11 March 2010.
The toolkit to support country programmes and partners in delivering inclusive education for children with disabilities will be finalised by the end of March and disseminated to countries over the following three months. Country offices will be encouraged to make use of the toolkit and share extensively with other development partners, through forums such as local education groups (LEG).